Well after two fairly full on days at work, I am happy to be home today. Washing done and on the line, a walk to the supermarket to grab a few items with Jarvis falling asleep in the pram on the way home.
It had all the beginnings of a perfectly mundane day. But I know this afternoon I will be pulled out of my domestic blissfulness and be sitting in the outpatients waiting room at the Royal Children’s Hospital – for how long, I can never be certain.
Today, it’s for Jarvis’s Opthamologist appointment. This one’s usually the longest wait, with the neurologist running a close second. Audiology is a dream in comparison.
For our last Opthamologist’s appointment, we waited for over 5 hours for a 5 minute consultation. But that’s just the way it is. Jumping through the medical hoops, making sure that any change in Jarvis is picked up early on.
I remember a time almost 15 months ago when I didn’t even know what an opthamologist was or did, a time before I was sitting in that same waiting room with my week-old baby in my arms.
Every time I’m there I’m struck by the patience and politeness shown by the parents waiting there with their children. On that very long wait, with others waiting longer than me – there was no yelling at staff, no attempting to jump the queue. Sure, there was exasperation and tales swapped about how long they’d been there, but no tantrums.
It’s a hell of a lot more civilised than a Target Toy Sale, which gets me thinking about how adversity can breed gratefulness and resilience.
I’ve had alot of time to sit and think in that waiting room. In those times when Jarvis was very small and slept there in my arms. I’ve always found the wait a bit emotional, all that sitting and thinking and then that one thought would always rise up loud in my mind – ‘What the Fuck am I doing here?’ ‘Why my baby?’ The longer the wait, the bigger my internal pity party.
But now he’s on the move, and waiting times are less about sitting and thinking and more about chasing and blocking. There’s no time to sit and reflect as the boy’s waiting room antics keep me well and trully in the present, grateful that he can crawl around, happy that he’s healthy and amused at him flashing his cheeky grin to whoever meets his eye.
Perspective descends. As he grows, there are less questions and more certainty. It seems that the 7th Nerve Palsy is here to stay, but so far it hasn’t affected his growth and development. His right eye may not close properly, but so far there is no damage due to dryness. The right side of his face may not work properly, but he has the cutest little smile I’ve ever seen.
So for now, we keep jumping through the medical hoops and the waiting is just part of the game.
Post-script: Today’s wait was 3 1/2 hours. So not the worst, but definitely not the best. The good news was there is still no damage to the eye and everything is working as it should. Come again in 6 months time!
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